A casino is an establishment for gambling. The most famous casino is in Las Vegas, Nevada, and many cities around the country have casinos to attract tourists who are interested in gambling. Casinos are also often located near or combined with hotels, resorts, restaurants, and other tourist attractions. Some casinos are known for hosting live entertainment and events.
Something about gambling (probably the large amounts of money involved) seems to encourage patrons and staff to cheat or steal, either in collusion with each other or independently. To prevent this, casinos employ a variety of security measures. Cameras are used to monitor general activity, and roulette wheels are electronically monitored regularly so that any statistical deviation from expected results can be quickly discovered. Some casinos have catwalks that enable surveillance personnel to look down on the action at table games and slot machines.
A casino’s profit comes from the fact that every game has a built in statistical advantage for the house, even those with an element of skill. This advantage can be small, but it adds up over time to give the casino a net profit, which is referred to as the “house edge.” Casinos may take additional profits in the form of a commission, sometimes called the vig or rake, on certain types of bets, or from the percentage of total funds returned to players on video poker and slot machines. A casino’s profitability is further enhanced by its ability to draw in high-rollers with luxurious inducements such as free spectacular entertainment, luxury hotel rooms and transportation, meals and drinks while gambling, and reduced-fare or comped hotel stays.